Mick Schumacher was once again robbed of a much-needed points finish, as his Formula 1 career looks ever more in turmoil after finishing P14 at the United States Grand Prix.
Schumacher made an excellent start in the race and found himself in P10 by Lap 18, after opting to run deeper into the race than those around him during his opening stint.
He massively benefited, though, on that very lap, as he was able to make a cheap pit-stop and emerge back onto the track in P12, after Valtteri Bottas beached his Alfa Romeo at Turn 19.
This brought out the first Safety Car of the race, which was released back onto the circuit virtually as soon as it re-entered the pits as racing resumed.
A second Safety Car was needed the following lap, following Lance Stroll’s and Fernando Alonso’s big collision down the main straight, which littered carbon fibre across the straight.
Schumacher’s luck then took a turn for the worse, as he not only hit a concerning amount of the debris but had to pick some out of his cockpit astonishingly.
Pictures released onto Twitter showed the 23-year-old throwing debris out of his car, which was damaged after hitting so much of it.
The German continued to circulate in P10, which he inherited as a result of the big crash; however, his lap-times were significantly worse than they were prior to the collision.
Schumacher opted to pit again and therefore found himself down in P16, before going onto finish the race in P15.
He did, though, inherit P14, after Alonso was awarded a 30-second time penalty for driving a damaged vehicle on the circuit.
Had it not been for hitting so much carbon fibre, then Schumacher was looking set for a brilliant points finish, something his team-mate managed after claiming P7.
Schumacher explained after the race that the “car didn’t feel the same” after hitting the carbon fibre, with the German feeling like “bad luck follows us”.
“I think we were on for good points today for sure, but it seems like we picked up a big piece which damaged the car quite a lot and then we couldn’t extract the maximum out of it anymore because of that damage,” Schumacher said.
“We got it in the second stint and the car didn’t feel the same anymore, and I couldn’t keep the pace of before which was very promising. It’s a shame as it feels like bad luck follows us.”
Haas boss Guenther Steiner was sympathetic for the German, who he admitted was showing “very good pace”.
Steiner highlighted that it looked like the diffuser was damaged, which cost the young driver “some downforce”.
“Mick had very good pace on his first stint, doing a fantastic job and then when the accident happened he must’ve picked up some debris and lost some downforce,” said Steiner.
“We haven’t seen the car yet but I guess the diffuser has got some damage and he just couldn’t do the same times with the new set of tyres.”